History & Staff
We have years of experience caring for families, from all walks of life. Each family comes to us because they know we are leaders in our profession, dedicated to excellence in service, and have the highest integrity.
As early as 1904, G. Frank Robinson was operating an undertaking parlor from the second floor of his furniture store in Damascus, Virginia. When Mock-Wright bought Mr. Robinson's business in 1912, L. H. Wright became the undertaker. In 1938, Herbert L. Wright purchased the undertaking business from Mock-Wright and soon moved it from the furniture store to a small former hotel across the street.
In 1949, Wright Funeral Home moved into a new two-story brick building that Wright had built for this purpose. The firm is still located there today. Just prior to his retirement in 1972, Wright sold the business to John Mullins, a funeral service licensee originally from Clintwood, Virginia, and the name was changed to Mullins Funeral Home. In October 1977, Mullins sold the firm to Bob Johnson of Coeburn, Virginia, who changed the name to Johnson Funeral Home.
During 1990, the Johnson Funeral Home building was completely remodeled - from new carpet on the floor to new shingles for the roof, new furniture, padding for the chapel pews, and new paint inside and out.
Effective October 1, 2001, Johnson Funeral Home was renamed Garrett Funeral Home. The funeral home was named for Todd Garrett who is the manager there. Richard Tetrick, President of Heritage Family Funeral Services, stated, "Todd stands for the funeral home. Not only is he the licensed funeral director and manager there, he is the symbol of the funeral home in the community. Todd is a 'home-town' boy who has done extremely well in his chosen field. After receiving training, he chose to return to his native community, where his family lives, to pursue his career. We are very pleased and consider it fitting to name the funeral home Garrett Funeral Home."
Our Valued Staff
Todd Garrett, Manager/Funeral Director/Embalmer
Todd, a licensed funeral director and embalmer in both Virginia and Tennessee, is the manager of Garrett Funeral Home. Todd is a native of Damascus, Virginia, and attended Holston High School where he was the captain and quarterback of the football team. He attended the Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science, Cincinnati, Ohio, where he graduated sixth in his class "Cum Laude" in 1992 with an Associate Degree in Mortuary Science. Todd is a member of the Virginia Institute of Funeral Professionals and is a former president of the Southwest Virginia Funeral Directors Association. Todd is a member of the First Baptist Church and has a son, Nicholas Peyton Garrett, and a daughter, Madison Nicolle Garrett.
Kelly A. Matney, Administrative Assistant
Kelly A. Matney grew up in Grundy, Virginia and graduated from Grundy High School in 2003 and later from Southwest Virginia Community College. She is married to Derek Matney and they have one daughter, Alivia, and one son, Kendrick. In her spare time, Kelly loves spending time with her family at the lake.
Lori B. Huffman, Administrative Assistant
Lori B. Huffman, a native of Damascus, Virginia, graduated from Holston High School in 2005. She then went on to Virginia Highlands Community College where she received an Associates Degree in Business Administration as well as General Studies. Lori furthered her education by graduating from New Mexico State University with a Bachelor of Wildlife Science where she was secretary for the NMSU Student Chapter of The Wildlife Society.
Hughes Rouse, Funeral Attendant
Charles Hughes Rouse, Jr. was born in Radford, Virginia and was raised in the Friendship Community of Washington County, Virginia. He graduated from Holston High School in 1967 and is a veteran of the U.S. Navy. Hughes worked for the Town of Damascus as a patrolman and Police Chief prior to his employment with the Washington County Sheriff's Office as a road deputy. After 31 years in law enforcement, Hughes retired as a Washington County School Resource Officer in July 2008. He is married to the former Linda Patrick of Damascus. Hughes and Linda have a son, Alan, and a daughter, Rebecca Aaron, and four grandsons. He enjoys riding his motorcycle, taking his grandsons hunting and fishing, and attending their sporting events. Hughes and Linda attend Damascus United Methodist Church.
Kenneth Meredith, Funeral Attendant
Kenneth, was born on May 26, 1946 in Marion, Virginia and was raised in Chilhowie, Virginia on the family farm. He graduated from Chilhowie High School in June 1964 and went to work as a bookkeeper and accounting clerk. In June 1966 he went to work for United Inter-Mountain Telephone Company in the accounting department. He received an associate degree in accounting from ETSU and a Bachelor of Bible degree from Tennessee Temple University. Kenneth has been in the ministry for forty-six years and has driven a school bus for twenty-nine years. He has operated a motor coach for Virginia Tech Sports and is currently driving for Premier Transportation, Knoxville, Tennessee. He is living in Damascus, Virginia and is the pastor of the Damascus Methodist Circuit consisting of Wrights Chapel, Laurel Community, and Zion Methodist Churches all in Damascus, Virginia.
Donald Neely, Funeral Attendant
Donald E. Neely was raised on the family farm in nearby Sutherland, Tennessee, and he graduated from Holston High School. He worked as a design draftsman for several coal related companies and later was the Operation Supervisor for a local airport. He and his wife, Jennifer, enjoy camping, canoeing, and farming. They are members of Mountain View United Methodist Church in Abingdon, Virginia.
Jeremy Weaver, Funeral Attendant
Jeremy Shaun Weaver, was born in Stuggart Germany where is father was stationed for the United States Army. Jeremy graduated from Holston High School in 1997. Jeremy then went on to the University of Virginia's College at Wise and pursued a degree in Physical Education with a concentration in Sports Management. Jeremy made his way back to Holston High School in 2007 to coach Football and Basketball. Jeremy attends Chilhowie Christian Church in Chilhowie, VA.